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Apple to kick off product blitz with iPhone Xs line, new watches


September 10. 2018 8:28PM
Apple Inc. iPhone X smartphones are displayed during the sales launch at a store in New York on Nov. 3, 2017. (MICHAEL NAGLE/BLOOMBERG)
Apple will kick off a blitz of new products this week, ending a year of minor updates and setting the technology giant up for a potentially strong holiday quarter.

Through the rest of 2018, the world's most valuable public company will launch three new iPhones, revamped iPad Pros, Apple Watches with larger screens, a new entry-level laptop with a sharper screen, a pro-focused Mac mini desktop computer and new accessories like the AirPower wireless charger.

The product launches will begin on Wednesday in the Steve Jobs Theater at the company's Apple Park headquarters in Cupertino, Calif. The focus will be on Apple's latest iPhones. It's still the company's most-important product, generating about two-thirds of revenue and spurring purchases of other Apple devices, along with services like app subscriptions, movie downloads, and iCloud storage. While smartphone market growth has slowed, higher prices have helped Apple keep expanding and it has gained market share.

Looming over Wednesday's event will be tariffs imposed on products from China by U.S. President Donald Trump. Apple warned last week that this will raise prices for some of its popular offerings like the Watch and AirPods. Trump on Saturday urged the company to return its manufacturing to the U.S.

There will be a trio of new smartphone models that look and act like the iPhone X from last year:

• An upgraded version of the iPhone X with a 5.8-inch screen, but adding a faster processor and upgraded cameras. This device is likely to be called the iPhone Xs, which would follow Apple's naming approach for new iPhones that look like the previous models but add new bells and whistles. It'll also come in gold, adding to the gray and silver versions from last year.

• A larger version of last year's iPhone X with a nearly 6.5-inch screen. That would make it one of the largest mass-market phones ever sold and about an inch larger than the screen on the iPhone 8 Plus.

To signify the even larger screen, Apple is likely to give the phone a new name: “iPhone Xs Max,” according to people familiar with Apple's internal deliberations.

• The third phone, a new low-cost version of the iPhone X, could be the hit of the product roll out. It'll have a roughly 6.1-inch screen with LCD instead of newer OLED technology. It will also use aluminum instead of stainless steel edges, and come in several additional colors.

Apple has considered calling the phone the “iPhone Xr,” one of the people said.


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